Best herbal tea 2022: Delicious decaf drinks to sip and enjoy
Tea might have a hold on the British populace, with most people knowing the exact proportions of tea, milk and sugar they prefer, but herbal tea is an entirely different proposition. In fact, simply finding the best herbal tea can be a daunting task due to the sheer volume of infusions on offer, including fragrant blends that often contain more than ten different herbs, flowers, and botanicals at once.
But, by all accounts, the versatility of herbal tea is simply astounding with plenty of minty, fruity, and spicy flavors to choose from. You can even mix loose leaf options for your own specialty blends – although ready-made tea bags are usually available if you want to keep things simple. What ties them all together is the use of botanicals that don’t come from the traditional tea bush, which means the herbal teas are almost universally caffeine-free – a real bonus for anyone trying to quell their caffeine cravings. Add in the reported benefits of helping constipation and bloating, anxiety, and weight loss and herbal teas have a lot going for them.
Below are a variety of proven herbal teas to choose from. Whether it contains chamomile, peppermint, or something a little different, we’ve tried to find you the best tasting options at competitive prices. But before that, you can read our buying guide on all things herbal tea, including what it is, some of the main varieties, and all the benefits associated with each.
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How to choose the best herbal tea for you
What is a herbal tea?
It’s a bit illogical, but herbal tea isn’t really tea in the proper sense of the word. Instead of getting their taste from the Camellia Sinensis plant – as true teas like black, green and white do – herbal teas could more accurately be described as infusions, as they are often blends of roots, flowers and leaves of a variety of other edible plants. . Tea and herbal tea can basically be herbs sprinkled with hot water, but herbal teas will not include Camellia Sinensis (unless otherwise specified). You also won’t be adding milk to the majority of these drinks as many regular tea drinkers do, although this is sometimes recommended or can be experienced.
Do herbal teas contain caffeine?
Unlike real teas, herbal teas are almost universally caffeine-free, which is great for anyone trying to kick their caffeine habits. The only exception is with Yerba Mate, a popular herbal tea in South America, which is naturally caffeinated.
You may find that some products described as herbal teas are actually artificially caffeinated, either by adding artificial caffeine molecules or by mixing them with real teas. All of the products we’ve listed below are caffeine-free unless otherwise stated, but it’s always important to check the label when shopping.
What are the different kinds of herbal tea?
Just like plants in the world, there are simply too many herbal teas to mention in one breath. Some of the popular favorites you may have heard of include chamomile, peppermint, ginger, and hibiscus, but there are plenty more. In fact, multiple botanicals are often combined into a single herbal blend to deliver enhanced flavors (and benefits) in every cup.
Why do people drink herbal teas?
Apart from the fact that the entire range of herbs on Earth provide different great tasting teas, herbal teas also have perceived and legitimate medicinal benefits. As mentioned, being caffeine-free is a big plus of consuming herbal teas. For example, anyone who drinks more than three cups of coffee a day would be at increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
There are also cultural and ritual ties to certain herbal teas, since these beverages have been served for almost as long as history tells us. Records have been found of herbal teas, such as flaxseed, cannabis, and thyme, used in ancient Egypt. Likewise, tea ceremonies using flowers such as lavender, honeysuckle, and jasmine date back to ancient China.
Many other health benefits of individual herbal teas have not always been thoroughly tested using scientific methods, but we have listed the perceived benefits associated with each herbal tea below.
What are the benefits of herbal teas?
It is always best to consult a doctor before using specific teas for medicinal purposes, for example teas containing licorice are known to increase blood pressure and should be avoided if you have high blood pressure. And, as mentioned above, some of the science is a bit patchy on the exact benefits of individual teas – so please don’t use this page as official advice.
Nonetheless, we’ll try to give you an overview of the perceived benefits reported with some of the main types of herbal teas, so that you have a better idea of what each option is good for below. We will also include the benefits of ingredients in specific products in the summary below this buying guide. Keep in mind that many teas contain a blend of herbs, so individual benefits will potentially be less or more pronounced.
- Chamomile tea: Helps induce sleep; soothe stomach pain and anxiety; reduce inflammation
- Peppermint tea: Ease bloating/irritable bowel syndrome; relieve tension headaches and nasal congestion.
- Ginger tea: Root frequently used to relieve nausea and stomach ailments; stimulate the appetite; fight cold symptoms
- Hibiscus tea: Rich in antioxidants; reduce inflammation; rich in polyphenols
- Echinacea tea: Rich in antioxidants; beneficial for the immune system; improve mood; rich in polyphenols
READ NEXT: Our guide to the best decaffeinated coffee
The best herbal teas to buy in 2022
1. Pukka Chamomile: Best tea for sleeping
Price: £11 (80 tea bags) | Buy now on Amazon
There are some great sleepy teas out there, but our favorite is Pukka’s. It has a calming aroma from the start, with a follow-up of earthy undertones and slightly sweet florals – as long as you infuse it for the required time – that will have the sheep queuing as bedtime approaches. .
It consists of a wonderful balance of three types of chamomile flowers: African (70%), Egyptian (20%) and European (10%). For chamomile lovers, it doesn’t get much better than this – though beginners shouldn’t be put off as it’s not overwhelming at all. Best of all, it’s in tea bag form, so no worries if you’re looking for a quick herbal nightcap.
Key Details – Ingredients: African chamomile flower, Egyptian chamomile flower, European chamomile flower; Type: tea bags; Infusion tips: Up to 15 mins
2. Bird&Blend Gingerbread Chai: The best spicy herbal tea
Price: £6 (for 50g) | Buy now at Bird&Blend
In terms of the spicy and sweet tea we would choose over and over again, it has to be the Bird&Blend Gingerbread Chai. It’s not just a flavor for the cold winter months either – although it does make a warming brew when that time arrives – this Rooibos based tea is delicious anytime. And as our buying guide notes, Rooibos is great for a number of reasons, including its low tannin content and high antioxidant content.
It tastes good on its own, but if you follow this Recipe and add milk, honey and cinnamon, you have an even more delicious drink that works especially well for those who are weaning themselves off caffeinated tea.
Alternatively, if you prefer a more fragrant (and visually stunning) bedtime cup of tea, we also recommend Bird&Blend’s Dozy Girl Chamomile Tea, which contains hibiscus, rose petals and lavender for a pink delight at bedtime.
Key Details – Ingredients: Rooibos, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, mallow flowers; Type: Loose-leaf; Infusion Tips: 1 heaped teaspoon per cup, 4+ minutes, with or without milk
3. T2 Just Peppermint: The best mint herbal tea
Price: £12 (for 50g) | Buy now on Amazon
In general, mint tea really delivers a kick of freshness like few other herbal teas can, but this pure peppermint option from the T2 Tea Specialists is by far our favorite mint pick. It is noticeably stronger than others on the market, without any of the bitterness that other brands struggle with.
Given Peppermint’s antibacterial properties, we’ve found it works particularly well as an after-meal palette cleanser, but it’s also been known to help relieve headaches, stomach pains, and cramps. menstrual. This tea and other T2 teas are packaged in convenient cube boxes – so you’ll always be quick to find and store this living tea when you need it.
Key Details – Ingredients: Pepper mint; Type: Loose-leaf; Infusion tips: 1 teaspoon per cup, 2/3 min
4. A.Vogel Golden Rod and Knotgrass Herbal Tea: Best Everyday Herbal Tea Bag
Price: £7 (25 tea bags) | Buy now on Amazon
Avid herbal tea consumers will know that many herbal blends come in sachets rather than ready-to-use bags. While this gives you the ability to mix and match flavors, having a standard tea ready to go is sometimes the easiest option.
Other blends on this list might be a little too flavorful for multiple cups a day, so if you want an easy-to-use tea bag that delivers enough flavor without tipping the scales, this option from A.Vogel is a go-to. more. All green tea lovers will appreciate similar notes, minus the caffeine, in what is a light and easy beverage any time of the day.
It is also one of the only herbal teas containing knotweed, which is believed to help relieve kidney problems, fatigue and bronchitis.
Key Details – Ingredients: goldenrod, wild pansy, horsetail, knotweed and birch leaves; Type: tea bags; Infusion tips: 5 minutes +
5. Turmeric and tropical sun tea: the best pure herbal tea
Price: £10 (120 tea bags) | Buy now on Amazon
We were initially a bit skeptical about making turmeric for a flavorful tea. Yes, it has scientific backing behind its health benefits as a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. But like a delicious tea? We remained undecided.
Turns out, turmeric is a delicious hot drink, with this 100% turmeric tea variety being our favorite. Drinking it neat works well, although the addition of pepper is thought to improve the absorption of turmeric – and also give your drink an extra kick. This might be a try for former coffee drinkers, as it really does provide a caffeine-free morning boost.
Key Details – Ingredients: Turmeric; Type: tea bags; Infusion tips: 2-5 minutes